As the largest health care provider in the United States, the Department of Defense faces significant challenges ensuring that all members of the military, as well as their families, receive appropriate care for everything from general health and well-being to amputations, chemically induced illnesses, and post-traumatic stress. Combining its expertise in health and defense policy, RAND examines policy issues surrounding military medical care needs and the systems intended to meet them.
The four-part RAND toolkit is designed to help those overseeing portfolios of multiple programs understand, evaluate, and improve program performance. This research brief describes the purpose of each part.
A RAND study of the challenges that reserve component service members and their families face after deployment and the factors that contribute to successful reintegration led to a series of recommendations for the U.S. Department of Defense.
The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) can better use its scarce resources through improved coordination with the private sector to reduce potential redundancies. The VHA can also provide access to high-quality care and meet rapidly changing needs.
Describes options for Department of Defense policy that would help the reserve components of the U.S. military achieve higher levels of individual medical readiness, including dental readiness.
With regard to Army families, the study examines the effects of long and frequent parental deployments on children’s academic performance as well as their emotional and behavioral well-being in the school setting.
Describes a new equipping strategy for the Army's Combat Support Hospitals.
Describes a new survey design framework that is centered on what service members and their families believe are their greatest needs.
The quality of mental health care delivered by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is generally as good or better than care delivered by private health plans, although it falls short of the high standards set in VA guidelines.
If all veterans suffering from major depression and posttraumatic stress disorder were to receive evidence-based treatments, policy simulations suggest that cost savings generated would be $138 million (15 percent) over two years.
Two goals of the joint medical training and education campus at Ft. Sam Houston are to become a high-performing learning organization and an accredited, degree-granting institution. A research and evaluation capability would help it meet these goals.
Shares results of a study assessing the broad array of challenges that returning veterans face at the state level, including a range of mental health concerns, problems finding jobs commensurate with their skills, and complicated health care systems.
The Military Health System faces a range of challenges, and effective leadership is key to meeting them. Approaches used by other organizations could guide improvements in how military health care leaders are selected, developed, and incentivized.
The increasing number of suicides is causing concern in the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD). Suicide-prevention programs in DoD and across the services have some (but not all) of the characteristics of comprehensive programs.
Reports the results of a longitudinal study of youth from military families and their caregivers concerning their emotional well-being and how well they are coping with servicemembers' extended deployments.
Summarizes analyses of existing posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) studies for war zone veterans, finding that the prevalence estimates vary widely and are linked to the use of different PTSD diagnostic definitions and divergent study samples.
To maintain relevant medical skills, some military medical personnel stationed at military treatment facilities could be stationed in civilian emergency rooms and trauma centers, where cases more closely resemble those found during deployment.
Evaluates a one-year trial in which two administrative requirements governing the provision of mental health care under TRICARE (the health care system for military personnel) were lifted, focusing on whether this increased access to such care.
Air Force, Army, and Navy training programs for enlisted medical personnel are being consolidated to increase interoperability. A RAND methodology defines standards of practice across services and evaluates options for obtaining qualified personnel.
Identifies barriers to mental health care access for military servicemembers and veterans in community settings.
Assesses the Department of Defense (DoD) response to three potential anthrax-related incidents at DoD facilities in March 2005 and recommends ways that DoD can improve its incident-response capabilities.